5 most extreme and dangerous sports

Till now restricted to fewer nations and limited activities, extreme or adventure or dangerous sport has been consistently gaining popularity with newer sports being introduced in the category. This when the activities classified as extreme sport come with a high level of inherent danger and are certainly not for the weak-hearted.

As on date around 40 activities (and many more number of variations) fall under the recorded classification of dangerous sport albeit with some debate over the levels of risks each carry. Of these 40 sports, we have picked 5 which are perceived to be most dangerous by a large group of stakeholders:

Cave Diving

Cave Diving

Image credit: Flickr DaseinDesign

Considered by many as the most dangerous sport Cave diving is a type of technical diving, which is not only challenging but also quite hazardous. The sport is an extension of caving and scuba diving and is undertaken for the exploration of under-water caves using specialized equipment and specific skill-sets. The one obvious danger is that due to the cave’s ceiling, the diver in an emergency cannot swim vertically to the surface but must swim the entire way back out. Poor or zero visibility and decompression sickness are some other hazards attached to this sport.

BASE Jumping

Base jumping

Image credit: Flickr santimolina

BASE in Base jumping is acronym for Buildings, Antennas, Spans (bridges) & Earth (cliffs). The sport involves participants jumping from fixed objects (any of the BASE) and using a parachute to break their fall. Owing to the obvious risks attached from falling from such heights, early BASE jumpers used two parachutes (main and reserve).  A 2002 study reveals that BASE jumping has one fatality per sixty participants.

Bungee Jumping

Bungee jumping

Image credit: Flickr syymza

Unlike the BASE jumping where a parachute or even a wing-suit is used Bungee jumping is an extreme sport that involves jumping from a tall structure or even a helicopter while connected to a large elastic cord. As the jumper jumps into a free fall, the cord, usually tied to the jumper’s feet, stretches to its full length to stop the jump a short distance before the earth / water surface. The jumper flies upwards again as the cord recoils.  This up and down continues until all the energy is dissipated. A common risk involved in the sport is the snapping of the cord, which in fact has been the prime reason of many casualties.  There have been serious injuries when the jumper’s neck or body has entangled in the cord. Increased stress levels, decrease in immune function and a type of stroke has also been linked to Bungee jumping.

Motorcycle Racing

Motorcycle Racing

Image credit: Flickr joeduty

Motorcycle racing with its many on-road and off-road genres is undoubtedly one of the most dangerous sports in the world, yet its popularity across the globe is unprecedented. The sport is as much popular with the riders as with the spectators and fans.  An extremely physically demanding sport, the thrill of the high speed, dirt tracks or rough / ice patches ensures that bikers forgo the obvious dangers with élan.

Big Wave Surfing

Big wave surfing

Image credit: Flickr Jeff Rowley Big Wave Surfer

A discipline within surfing Big wave surfing is actually a more serious and more hazardous form of surfing where surfers, using varied sizes of surf board (depending on size of the wave and individual technique), paddle into or are towed onto waves which are at least or over 20 feet high. At that height, the surfers have to maintain their equilibrium either my moving zigzag or by spinning themselves.  Failure to maintain the equilibrium means the waves may push the surfer down 20-50 feet below the surface in-turn causing rupture of eardrums, severe injuries or even death.

4 Responses to 5 most extreme and dangerous sports
  1. Montana
    October 14, 2012 | 7:38 pm

    What about Downhill biking ? That’s my dangerous sport and it’s an amazing one…

  2. Duncan
    November 2, 2012 | 10:37 am

    And what about extreme skiing? I would count that as more dangerous than Bungee Jumping or Big Wave surfing. Avalanches, spires, cliffs, hidden obstacles, odd visibility, changing snow conditions, and frost trolls.

  3. Doug Coleman
    November 24, 2012 | 9:51 am

    You missed what is statistically the most dangerous sport: solo sailing around the world; e.g., the Vendee Global, BOC, or Global Challenge. A significant percentage of the participants do not survive. Base jumping may be the only sport that comes close.

  4. Steve Waclo
    January 1, 2013 | 1:18 am

    While professional motorcycle racing is certainly not a walk in the park, contemporary track design, in addition to advanced rider protective gear us made the sport much less dangerous than in days of yore. Fully “pro’ed up”, I walked away from a accident on the road a few years back that was simply a major inconvenience. No injury. And the pros are even better protected.
    “High sides” (over the bars due to losing the rear end, then having it regain traction, snapping back and launching a rider) are probably among the worst situations, along with being hit by another bike following a get-off.

    Statistically, on the basis of “saddle time”, riding a horse is more dangerous….

    Best wishes all and be safe.

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